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Showing posts with the label soul

PRINCE - "PRINCE" 1979

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  PRINCE   "PRINCE" 1979   I WANNA BE YOUR LOVER - The opening track to Prince's second album was his first big hit in the USA reaching number 11 in the Billboard Hot 100 and also was his first single in the UK chart although only reaching number 41. It is a falsetto vocal all through backed by a funky almost Disco sound.  At about 2 minutes 40 the Synth Pop Disco style takes us to the end of the 5 minutes plus tune .  The first big notice that Prince was coming.   WHY YOU WANNA TREAT ME SO BAD? - A New Wave Funk Rock track, with hints of Rock N' Roll with the guitars and bass and easy drumbeat.  Sung in high pitch once again but well worth a listen for the awesome guitar solo for the last minute or so, introducing us to the sublime talent.   SEXY DANCER - A genre popping track, not so complicated lyric wise, with lots of grunts, sighs and soft vocals with an occasional scream.  Funky as hell, and because of the "orgasmic" breathy sighs was treated as ris

SPANDAU BALLET - "TRUE" 1983

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SPANDAU BALLET "TRUE" 1983 PLEASURE - Opener for the album and set the classy stylish tone for this record.  A real snappy chorus and matches perfectly with the singles released from this set. Bright, breezy, big vocals from Tony Hadley and pure New Wave Soul. COMMUNICATION -  This track became an unusual Club Disco classic.  I remember the 12" being awesome as well.  Great vocal harmonies, minimal musical backing with a memorable sing-a-long chorus.  One of my favourites.     CODE OF LOVE - Would be a great James Bond theme, slow and mysterious with fabulous vocals from Tony. GOLD - Everyone knows this song from adverts, parties and pretty much everywhere.  Chugging drums, powerful range of vocals and a great Saxophone solo make this a classic and much covered by many artists.   LIFELINE - A more summery Pop track than other tracks on this album but a great song nonetheless.  All the usual Spandau traits are here from this era.

NICK HEYWARD - "NORTH OF A MIRACLE" 1983

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NICK HEYWARD "NORTH OF A MIRACLE"   1983     WHEN IT STARTED TO BEGIN - The opening track is an orchestral based, breezy Pop song, similar to Nick's former band Haircut 100 but more accomplished in style.   BLUE HAT FOR A BLUE DAY - One of my favourite 80s songs not just by Nick.  A minimal, melodious Pop ballad, with a memorable chorus and great lyrics proving Nick was a very underrated songwriter and possibly still is.  Lovely song.     TWO MAKE IT TRUE - A track with a slight Country twang interspersed with some bright jazzy Pop.  Another great tune.   ON A SUNDAY - Reminds me a little of The Police and Men At Work with a little of The Cars, almost Reggae Pop Rock.  Sophisticated and classy. CLUB BOY AT SEA - Lots of different orchestral and effects but this is probably my least favourite on the album, its a slow tempo kind of Pop ballad.  On such a great debut album this is probably my filler. WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND - A sim

PRINCE - "CONTROVERSY" 1981

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PRINCE  "CONTROVERSY" 1981 CONTROVERSY - Prince's 4th album is said to have bridged the gap from the sexual energy of "Dirty Mind" to the Funk Rock Dance phenomenon created on "1999".  The album opens with the epic 7 minute Dance title track.  Its pumping funky beat along with delightful keyboard harmonising keeps the energy flowing throughout.  Prince acknowledges the so called "controversies" and pretty much blatantly spells it all out about the pre-conceptions about him "am I black or white, straight or gay?" and also culture in general.  It didn't chart in the UK on release but made number 5 a mere 12 years later! SEXUALITY - Another funky Dance number with Prince declaring that "sexuality is all we ever need".  Of course everybody must dance as well! A great track and glides along nicely with Prince's trademark sexually charged spueals adding cheekiness, eroticism, or whatever the listener takes from it.   D

THE BESSER 3 - "TIME TRAVELS" 2018

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THE BESSER 3 "TIME TRAVELS " 2018     WHO'S COUNTING? - The opening track is a kind of march style song with full force.  Very dramatic and mysterious, clever off beat and off tune elements which reminds me of a soundtrack to a movie thriller.  A mix of light piano and heavier, angry chops and the Swing style slow, jagged tempo set us up for a rollercoaster ride of experiments to come. KLEZMATIZED - Uptempo foot tapping track, sounds like a real Jazz jamming session.  Gives the feeling of happiness and fun and the funky bass gives this a real lift.  Really love this track, all musicians give the impression that this was a good time! SWINGTIME OUT - Gentle, bass and piano in this real Swing Jazz chilled out track.  Minimal sounding but very casual and easy on the ears.  I can imagine being in an old style bar late at night with the band playing on stage in the cool, smokey air. STEP FIVE - Romantic and emotive sounding track, again would be a

MADONNA - "TRUE BLUE" 1986

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MADONNA   "TRUE BLUE" 1986   PAPA DON'T PREACH - Madonna's third studio album opens with the critically acclaimed track that was her second number 1 in the UK chart.  A positive anthem for young mothers everywhere and stressing the message that women can be strong in adversity.  This strong feminine image was pioneering to women throughout the 80s and 90s.  A great mid tempo orchestrated Pop ballad.  Classic. OPEN YOUR HEART - A favourite track of mine, I love the throbbing uptempo clattering of drums.  A great anthemic chorus and big vocals from Madonna. reaching number 4 on the UK chart, the top ten hits kept coming.  This had a hint of Motown and R 'n B in there too.  One of Madonna's best.   WHITE HEAT - This is a mid to fast paced Synth Pop with hints of Rock guitar sounds.  Sampling the film White Heat's dialogue and gunshots its a decent song.  Not one of my favourites but its got a good tempo but is a little too repetitive for me.  As with all g

CYNDI LAUPER - "SHE'S SO UNUSUAL" 1983

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CYNDI LAUPER "SHE'S SO UNUSUAL" 1983     MONEY CHANGES EVERYTHING - The opening track of Cyndi's debut album was a cover of The Brains'  1980 underground hit.  New Wave Rock Pop, Cyndi explores her vocal range to the hilt with some ear piercing, amazing high notes, which critics' adored later on her career.  Great uptempo start to a great album. GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN - One of Cyndi's signature tunes and became a feminist anthem and a hit all over the globe.  Perfect 80s Pop, with elements of Dance and Rock, and an unbelievably catchy sing along chorus.  One of the best and most memorable songs of the 80s decade. WHEN YOU WERE MINE - As a Prince fan I recognised this cover version on first listen.  A brilliant 80s Synthpop style track where she kept all of the he/him/his pronouns in the lyrics.  A mid tempo ballad that stands on its own and gives Cyndi's album a more mature track amid the hits.   TIME AFTER TIME

MADONNA - "EROTICA" 1992

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  MADONNA  "EROTICA" 1992   EROTICA - The fifth studio album by Madonna was released at the same time as her accompanying book, "SEX" .  The video for this title track caused as much controversy as the book.  The song itself is a trip hop style sexy dance song.  It reached number 3 in the UK chart, it paved a way for more experimental leanings later in her career after the pure Pop of her previous albums.  Although "Like A Prayer" was edging towards this album.  Not one of my ultimate favourite Madonna songs but still a great one. FEVER - A cover version of the song made famous by Peggy Lee, although this is more of a House dance song.  It leads on nicely from the title track in this album but its still a weak song in my opinion, more for the club dance officianados rather than music lovers of multi genres.  It surprisingly reached number 6 in the UK. BYE BYE BABY - I didn't like this song at first but it grew on me over the years.  It works well as

PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION - "AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY" 1985

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  PRINCE AND THE REVOLUTION "AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY" 1985 AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY - The title track opens up this 7th album by Prince and the second official set with The Revolution.  It is a Psychedelic Pop track with various distorted backing vocals and effects that give the scene as being 60s hippie time. It's a great easy going opener that is both spiritual and experimental.   PAISLEY PARK - The second single to be lifted from the set and reaching number 18 in the UK chart.  It is more like late 60s Progressive Rock than the previous uptempo "Raspberry Beret" and surprisingly went higher.  I always liked this song, its a little off key, its sound is like nothing I heard before and the chorus is strangely catchy. CONDITION OF THE HEART - An anthemic epic Prince ballad, coming in at almost 7 minutes.  Mostly piano backing with various choral vocals.  Prince uses his full range here and for me its a little long and not up there with the best ballads by

THE TIME - "THE TIME" 1981

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  THE TIME   "THE TIME" 1981 GET IT UP - Although this debut album by the Prince proteges is basically a Prince recording (all instruments except a Dr Fink synth solo on "Cool") , Morris Day does sing the vocals.  The Time became a popular live band on Prince tours and became a band in their own right.  This opener is a funky soul workout with keyboards and guitar solos at the fore.   GIRL - A pretty basic slow soul ballad, sadly the vocals of Morris Day cannot lift this like Prince probably could.  Average track. AFTER HI SCHOOL - In the vein of Prince's quirky fast paced sparse funky tracks such as "Gotta Stop (Messin' About)" and "Jack U Off".  Its a decent song but nothing great despite being written by former Prince guitarist, Dez Dickerson. COOL - 10 minutes of classic Prince Funk, a throbbing beat, the aforementioned Dr Fink synth solo make this a very "cool" track indeed.  Best track on the album for me.  Co-written

MADONNA - "BEDTIME STORIES" 1994

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MADONNA   "BEDTIME STORIES" 1994   SURVIVAL - After the somewhat controversial mixed surroundings of previous album "Erotica" and the "Sex" book and indeed the "Body Of Evidence" movie this sixth album is Madonna back to her best.  This opening track is a Pop/R 'n B hybrid with almost Jazz-like undertones but with a cool simple beat and good harmonies and melody.  A nice, chilled out smooth start. SECRET - One of my favourite Madonna tracks, an almost Acoustic styled track with Jazz leanings.  The vocals are brilliant and showcased her voice without the aid of electronics, it was a more mature Madonna.  I loved this style and it suited her, it has a slight funky beat but a great Pop song all round.  This single reached number 5 in the UK chart as the lead track from the album.   I'D RATHER BE YOUR LOVER - Featuring rapper Meshell Ndegeocello on vocal rapping and bass, this is a repetitive but engaging funky Pop dance track.  A decent t

PAUL YOUNG - "NO PARLEZ" 1983

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  PAUL YOUNG “NO PARLEZ” 1983 COME BACK AND STAY - A cover of Jack Lee’s 1981 song opens this debut album by one of the best voices in music.  This is a Soul track with an updated New Wave style.  This fourth single from the album reached number 4 in the UK chart following on the success of "Wherever I Lay My Hat (That's My Home)".   LOVE WILL TEAR US APART - A great, updated cover of Joy Division's 1980 classic.  The elements are still there from the original with Paul giving it a Soul update  WHEREVER I LAY MY HAT (THAT'S MY HOME) - The fantastic track that got me listening to Paul regularly.  Such a great vocals on this track. First recorded by Marvin Gaye in 1962 this rendition got Paul his first number 1 in the UK and set him on the way for a great 80s and long standing career. KU KU KURAM A - A madcap 80s Synth Pop/New Wave track reminiscing Nik Kershaw or Howard Jones.  Its engaging but an experimental mish mash and wastes Paul's voice hidden in the

SPICE GIRLS - "SPICE" 1996

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SPICE GIRLS "SPICE" 1996   WANNABE - The opening track and debut single by the girls.  A mega hit all over the globe and introduced "girl power" to the masses.  An almost Motown Dance Pop feel interspersed with rapping segments it paved the way for numerous girl acts throughout the 90s and beyond.  Ironically not my favourite "Spice" song I think they have made better tracks.     SAY YOU'LL BE THERE - One of my favourite tracks by the girl and the video allowed the girls to glam up "superhero" scenarios.  An Electronic backing track with a Motown/R n' B style make this a memorable song with a touch of a harmonica solo as well.   2 BECOME 1 - A lush, sophisticated Pop ballad that became a Christmas Number One despite the lyrics talking about two lovers bonding and the importance of using contraception.  Really lovely song and a Spice gem. LOVE THING - The first non-single to appear on this album.  Its pre

SUGABABES - "ONE TOUCH" 2000

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SUGABABES   "ONE TOUCH" 2000 OVERLOAD - This debut album recored by the original three members as teenagers, was a brilliant first set.  This opening track was smooth, R 'n B/Funk with a throbbing steady drumbeat and some almost lazy, but engaging vocals.  The single reached number 6 in the UK chart and was a storming introduction to the girl group's career, as powerful an ear opener as Spice Girls' "Wannabe". ONE FOOT IN - This song is pretty much a straight forward 90s style Pop song in the vein of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera in their fledgling days.  A very accomplished track although a comedown from the opening track, it still has merit. SAME OLD STORY - Another very smooth and mature track that you would believe it from Destiny's Child or maybe TLC not by 3 teenage girls.  This is a cool funky song with some really nice harmonies. JUST LET IT GO - Again a song that the previous aforementioned seasoned girl groups would be proud of.

JACK SAVORETTI - "EUROPIANA" 2021

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  JACK SAVORETTI  "EUROPIANA" 2021 I REMEMBER US - Jack's seventh studio album opens with this unusual merging of Europop and an orchestral Rock ballad.  Containing childlike harmonised voices and Jack's emotional throaty vocals.  A really nice song.  Anthemic and 80s-like. SECRET LIFE - Another genre explored here, Jack gives us some midtempo Dance music with a throbbing, steady drumbeat similar to late 80s, early 90s clube hits.  WHO'S HURTING WHO (featuring Nile Rodgers) - Co-wriiten with Mark Ralph and the Chic legend Nile Rodgers.  A catchy, memorable chorus intertwines a great retro 70s funky Disco feel.  Great track.   WHEN YOU'RE LONELY (featuring John Oates) - This track includes another star of the 80s, one half of Hall & Oates!.  The song has a slight Latin feel and is a laid back slow Pop ballad.  It reminds me of Wet Wet Wet in their heyday.  MORE THAN EVER - A slow, piano led ballad that Jack lifts to new heights with some impassioned, emot

DEACON BLUE - "WHEN THE WORLD KNOWS YOUR NAME" 1989

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DEACON BLUE "WHEN THE WORLD KNOWS YOUR NAME" 1989 QUEEN OF THE NEW YEAR - Fast tempo Celtic Folk sound, starting with the drums in marching band mode and just building and building to this massive crescendo of a chorus.  A real foot stomper to open the album! WAGES DAY -  This song kept up the pace from the opener with its uptempo beat all the way through the song and and would get your foot tapping and singing the catchy chorus as high and as loud as you can!     REAL GONE KID - The debut single from the album and was a more polished "live" band sound from the previous debut album's tracks from "Raintown".  It has a real Soul feel, which dives into a pulsating chorus and hit the senses as something memorable.       LOVE AND REGRET - A much slower track than previous 3 tracks.  It reminded me a little of Heart, it is essentially a Rock ballad, soft vocals from Ricky Ross and soft harmonies from Lorraine McIntosh ma